This is just disrespectful. A proposal has been made to name the corner of St. James Place and Fulton Street “Christopher Wallace Way” in honor of the late, great The Notorious B.I.G. However, one community board member in the Clinton Hills neighborhood said Biggie Smalls shouldn’t be honored because of his criminal background, and because he was too fat.
Reports DNA Info New York:
Community board members objected to naming a corner for the late rapper Biggie Smalls because, according to some, he was a criminal, a misogynist — and too fat to be honored.
CB2 member Lucy Koteen said she “looked up the rapper’s history” and read what she had learned to the full board Tuesday night.
“He started selling drugs at 12, he was a school dropout at 17, he was arrested for drugs and weapons charge, he was arrested for parole violations, he was arrested in North Carolina for crack cocaine, in 1996 he was again arrested for assault, he had a violent death and physically the man is not exactly a role model for youth,” she said. “I don’t see how this guy was a role model and frankly it offends me.”
Ken Lowy, board member and owner of the Brooklyn Heights Cinema, said he did not appreciate that the rapper, whose birth name was Christopher Wallace, referred to women with derogatory names in his music.
We’re going to assumed Lucy Koteen isn’t a fan of “Juicy,” because she most definitely been one of the people he referred to as call the cops on him in the song.
Despite the community board members’ indifference (we would say veiled racism, but we’ll save that argument for another day), LeRoy McCarthy, 45, who is pushing to name the street after Brooklyn rapper, is still holding it down.
McCarthy said after the meeting that “board members should not hold Wallace’s physical appearance nor how he died against him.”
“There are many artists that share stories in a vernacular that their audiences understand,” said McCarthy in response to the complaint about misogynistic lyrics. “Biggie used the language from the streets he grew up in to convey what he wanted to say.”
Wallace was raised by a single mother at 226 St. James Place in Clinton Hill. He went on to become an award-winning rapper and Brooklyn icon. He was killed in a drive-by shooting in Los Angeles in 1997.
McCarthy presented the board with letters of support from two local churches, a mosque, a nearby block association, several local businesses and more than 1,000 comments from people all over the world who signed an online petition in support of the co-naming.
The decision about the co-naming of the street after the Notorious B.I.G. is actually being held up because councilwoman Letitia James, who was just elected NYC’s new TKPublic Advocate, has not delivered a “letter of support,” which is required. Thus the proposal was tabled Community Board until James or her successor issues a letter of support.
Do you think the Notorious B.I.G. should have a street named after him, or should his criminal background prevent such an honor? Let us know in the comments.
Photo: New York Daily News